Giving Back

My Helper’s High: How Volunteering Benefits YOU

Leslie Garrett by Leslie Garrett | January 21st, 2014 | 1 Comment
topic: Giving Back, Green Living, Personal Growth

My first taste of volunteer work came when I was 12 years old. It was 1976, and McDonald’s restaurants were encouraging kids to host carnivals to raise funds for muscular dystrophy. Though I had little understanding of muscular dystrophy, I loved a backyard party. My philanthropic mother had planted a deep seed in me regarding helping others. “To whom much is given, much is expected” was our motto.

I received my carnival kit and recruited the neighborhood kids to help. We had a fortune teller, sno-cone table, games of chance and more, raising about $70. But the major payoff was that I fell in love with good causes.

Since then, I’ve volunteered as a swim buddy for kids with spina bifida and worked with various organizations that focus on environmental issues, homelessness, poverty and AIDS. These days, I volunteer weekly at a soup kitchen, washing dishes and passing out fruit (when we have enough) to the down-on-their-luck men and women who come inside for soup and community. I also chair an eco-committee at my kids’ school. And though it seems counter-intuitive — after all, I’m a busy mom of three — I find myself with more energy to tackle my other commitments.

Put a Little Jingle in Your Workout

The FIRM Master Instructor Team by The FIRM Master Instructor Team | December 10th, 2013 | 1 Comment
topic: Fitness, Giving Back

Woman in Santa hat lifting weightsHoliday fun can wear you down — eating, drinking and festivities can take their toll on you mentally and physically. While a workout may seem like the last thing you have the time or energy for, it can enliven your spirit and alleviate stress. Think you have to choose between fitness and fun? Not so! Incorporate elements of the holiday season into your workout routine and you’ll add variety and interest and increase your motivation and enjoyment. Here are some ideas to help you put the holiday spirit into your workout:

The True Cost of the Clothes on Our Backs

Leslie Garrett by Leslie Garrett | November 25th, 2013 | 2 Comments
topic: Giving Back, Green Living

Fair Trade Clothing

I can trace my path to eco-awareness from a desire for undershirts. Baby undershirts, to be exact.

Gratitude for Food: Why I Fasted on Thanksgiving

Girlfriend@Gaiam by Girlfriend@Gaiam | November 28th, 2012 | 3 Comments
topic: Girlfriend@Gaiam, Giving Back, Personal Growth

Fasting

I love good food and celebrations with family and friends. Which makes Thanksgiving one of my favorite holidays — it serves up both in spades!

But this Thanksgiving, I did something a little different. Rather than filling my belly with the usual feast, I decided to observe a day of fasting, which I followed up with a donation to our local food bank.

That’s right: a no-food Thanksgiving!

Delivering Zen

Girlfriend@Gaiam by Girlfriend@Gaiam | July 24th, 2012 | 1 Comment
topic: Girlfriend@Gaiam, Giving Back, Green Living, Health & Wellness

Yuzen

Whether it’s a free sample at the grocery store or a new brand your best friend just recommended, discovering a fantastic new product is almost like falling in love.

That’s why it felt like Christmas in July when we unwrapped Yuzen’s July “box of Zen,” beautifully packaged and filled with products that are nourishing for the body, soul and planet.

Yuzen, a Boulder, Colo.-based company, makes it easy to find — and fall in love with — the best new eco-friendly products. It’s also an invitation to pause and take a quiet moment to enjoy some of life’s simple pleasures: a hot cup of tea, the smell of fresh flowers or a mouth-watering bite of dark chocolate.

Yoga & Music in the Mountains: Hanuman Festival, June 8-10, 2012

Gaiam Staff by Gaiam Staff | May 15th, 2012 | No Comments
topic: Eco Travel, Fitness, Gaiam Happenings, Giving Back, Green Living, Yoga

Hanuman Yoga Festival

This June, dust off your travel yoga mat and head to beautiful Boulder, Colo., for the second annual Hanuman Festival! More than your typical yoga retreat, Hanuman combines yoga, music and community, all for some great causes.

When: June 8-10, 2012

Where: Boulder, Colorado, near the foothills of the Rocky Mountains

The yoga: The all-star instructor lineup includes classes with Kathryn Budig, Tommy Rosen, Kia Miller, Amy Ippoliti and many more.

The music: Enjoy concerts featuring Desert Dwellers, Jim Beckwith, Ashlee K Thomas, David Newman (Durga Das), Vamadeva Jaya, DJ Drez, The Pushpams,  David “Duke Mushroom” Schommer and many more. Artists will perform during select yoga classes as well as at scheduled concerts.

The causes:

  • Off the Mat and Into the World, a program that “uses the power of yoga to inspire conscious, sustainable activism and ignite grassroots social change.”
  • The Wellness Initiative, which seeks to “improve the physical health, social and emotional development, and academic performance of low-income youth through yoga-based wellness programs.”
  • Give Back Yoga Foundation supports and fund certified yoga teachers in all traditions to offer the teachings of yoga to under-served and under-resourced socio-economic segments of the community.

Gaiam is especially excited for this event because it’s one of the only yoga festivals to take place right in our own backyard — less than eight miles from our Louisville, Colorado headquarters! Gaiam and Gaiam TV will each have booths at the festival, where participants will be able to check out our newest yoga mats, DVDs and other gear, as well as meet some of your favorite yoga instructors who will be stopping by to say hello or help you perfect your poses.

We chatted with Cara Fogel Ferrick, Hanuman’s sales and marketing director, who gave us the scoop on what sets Hanuman apart (and where that name came from!).

Karma Yoga: Does It Really Start With You?

YOGANONYMOUS by YOGANONYMOUS | April 9th, 2012 | 1 Comment
topic: Fitness, Giving Back, Personal Growth, Relationships, Yoga

Karma Yoga

By Adri Kyser

You hear people talk about Karma more and more nowadays. They use this word to describe something good or bad that happened to them or to someone else. Often you can even hear this word used to predict the future consequences a person may receive based upon a particular action.

Celebrate Global Oneness Day, October 24th

Gaiam Staff by Gaiam Staff | October 18th, 2011 | 2 Comments
topic: Conscious Living News, Giving Back, Inspirational Media, Personal Growth, Relationships

Global Oneness Day

“What is Oneness?

Oneness is more than a beautiful word. Science increasingly shows it is our true nature – that life is a unified whole with multiple dimensions, each complementing the other.

Beyond that, Oneness is the key to peace.”

Travel That Gives Back: This Earth Day, Plan a Voluntourism Vacation

Wendy Worrall Redal by Wendy Worrall Redal | April 21st, 2011 | No Comments
topic: Eco Travel, Giving Back, Green Living

Measuring a sea turtle

As Julio hauled the net into our skiff, we spied a green sea turtle ensnared in the mesh. In this case, we were happy to see our captive: Julio is the Magadalena Baykeeper on Mexico’s Baja Peninsula, and part of his job is working with Grupo Tortuguero — the world’s foremost sea turtle conservation group — to capture, study and release endangered turtles in order to help ensure their future.

Posing on the Job: Gaiam Vendor Offers Yoga at Work

Gaiam Staff by Gaiam Staff | April 1st, 2011 | No Comments
topic: Fitness, Giving Back, Health & Wellness, Yoga

Woman doing yoga at workHere at Gaiam, we don’t just walk the walk — we pose the pose. Many of us really do keep up a regular yoga practice, and yes, we love to use our Gaiam yoga mats, bags, straps, blocks and clothes. We also count ourselves lucky that we can do yoga at work — either on our own at the on-site gym or at weekly on-site yoga classes. There’s truly nothing like Warrior Pose to start the workday or Savasana to melt away stress at the end of it.